This is the last week of school for my kids. We are almost to that glorious time of the year when the uniforms get packed away, the lunch boxes get sanitized and stored, and my nemesis (the mismatched sock basket) gets replaced by flip flops and sandals.
It’s one of my favorite times of the year. It’s also one of my least favorite times of the year. All of those “end of the year” concerts, awards dinners, tournaments and parties added to the “stuff” of regular life wears me out.
Every year about this time I think about one of my favorite blog posts from the last few years. It’s by Jen Hatmaker and it’s called Worst End of the School Mom Ever. I read it again this morning and laughed so hard that I cried. Seriously. And then I remembered that I hadn’t finished all of our teacher “thank you” gifts yet and I cried again but for a very different reason!
I have a love/hate relationship with that blog post. I hate it because it perfectly describes my life right now. I can relate to it, and it reminds me that I will probably never be “enough” (at least in the sense that I will never get it all done in the manner I would LIKE to be able to). I also love it, however, because it perfectly describes my life right now. I can relate to it. It reminds me that I am not alone.
I have a similar relationship with God’s Word. I would never describe the Bible in terms of “hate”, of course, but I often experience it in a similar way to that blog post. In our Wednesday morning Bible Class for instance, we recently studied Proverbs 31 and the (in)famous “Wife of Noble Character”. I’m not generally a fan of the wife of noble character of Proverbs 31. Know why? Because she is everything that I want to be but am very aware that I am not. Instead of my children rising and calling me blessed, more often than not my children roll out of bed 5 minutes before carpool arrives and say, “where’s my service hours form I need signed by today?”. That doesn’t feel like the same thing. Because it’s not.
Proverbs 31 and much of Scripture, in fact, highlights my failures and shortcomings. This time through Proverbs 31, however, something hit me afresh. It was verse 30, “Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.” In other words, it’s not what this woman does of herself that is to be praised but rather what she does in service and gratitude to God for what He has done for her. Now THAT I can relate to.
Scripture does do a great job of pointing out my sin and inadequacies, but it does so to point me to what I really need to hear…that it was because of those inadequacies and because of his great love for me in spite of those inadequacies that God showed his love for me by sending his Son. That reminder makes me want to take on the end of this school year and the world in general like a wife and mother of noble(ish) character….right after I pour another cup of coffee…